Persons with disabilities are still facing barriers

Persons with disabilities are still facing barriers-it was concluded at the “Look at me, I am commuter as well” conference. The conference was held at the PR Center in Podgorica, on 18. February 2020.
The executive director of the Union of the Blind of Montenegro, Goran Macanović, emphasized that independent daily activities were a priority for every disabled person.

“In order to remain independent and lead independent life, persons with disabilities have to be supported by community and society they live in, so as to encounter fewer obstacles to their independence. Only then can they be equal to other citizens”, said Lacmanović.

He added that an independent activity was one of the prerequisites for living an independent life. Every visually impaired person that wanted to be independent should have an access to adequate conditions pertaining to physical environment we live in.

“If we talk about visually impaired persons in terms of pedestrians walking with a white cane, or with a help of guide dog, we have to have both the services and resources that support and facilitate disabled persons’ independence. It is very important to encourage and motivate visually impaired persons to get out of their comfort zone and bravely meet the challenges that lie ahead”, explained Lacmanović.

The independent advisor in the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs, Selma Dacić, said that “in 2018, the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Affairs funded seven NGO disability-related projects, with the sum total of 30 000 Euros”.

“I would like to mention that that was the year of the law on NGOs implementation, from which we learned a lot. In 2019, we signed 25 agreements with 25 NGOs, which means that we covered three areas-environmental protection in the field of transportation, protection of persons with disabilities in the field of transportation and safety and security in traffic, as a separate area.

The total funding amount is around 173 000 Euros, of which 61.383 Euros is reserved for ten disability-related projects”, said Dacić.
She said that the asset allocations for the year 2020 were in line with the Law on NGOs and that the calls for proposals were under way.
While presenting analysis findings from the area of transportation, Katarina Bigović said that four municipalities were covered by analysis, namely Podgorica, Nikšić, Bijelo Polje and Bar.”

She explained that 48 people with impaired vision from all four towns participated in polls, of which 25 males and 23 females. Each group consisted of 12 persons with impaired vision.

The results showed that participants were aware of the problems persons with impaired vision faced. All municipalities had common issues, namely unsafe construction sites, stray dogs, lack of tactile paving, acoustic signalization, bus stops, improper parking, the right of way, low hanging traffic lights and advertisements, broken pillars, low sidewalks, parking spaces and bumpy roads.

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